It's time to open Pandora's box (make whatever witty comments you like given the title of the blog) and take a look at a few different types of supplements...
The Best Supplements for Better Sleep
ZMA: This is a blend of the essential minerals, Zinc and Magnesium with the goal of supporting recovery from exercise via improving the quality of your sleep. Zinc is thought to play a role in the regulation of normal DNA synthesis, cognitive (brain) function, normal fertility & reproduction along with the metabolism of macronutrients and synthesis of new proteins.
Magnesium is essential for the maintenance of electrolyte balance, healthy metabolism, functioning of the nervous system, cell division and protein synthesis.
Studies have shown that supplementing with ZMA can help the body achieve deeper levels of REM sleep – the stage of sleep where all the magic happens! So the more/better quality REM sleep we can get, the better. (Read our previous blog on why you need to get better sleep, and more of it...)
Taurine: This is an amino acid that is thought to have several benefits: Lowering blood pressure, fighting inflammation, detoxifying the organs and protecting the heart. In some circles, Taurine is known as the amino acid of anxiety control and stress management as it helps lower the stress hormone, Cortisol. Taurine also elevates levels of GABA which is a chemical neurotransmitter that has soothing effects on the nervous system, hence its helpful effects on improving sleep.
The Best Supplements for Recovery
Sleep: Ok, so not a supplement, but better sleep improves your recovery and your ability to keep crushing it at the gym.
Fish oil: The list of potential benefits for taking regular doses of fish oil are endless: body composition, insulin sensitivity, cognitive function, fat oxidation, cardiovascular health, etc.
With regards to recovery, fish oil has been shown to reduce inflammation. Inflammation is a natural response that happens in response to a stressor on the body. Exercise is a stressor, but it is an acute (short-term) stressor that can be healthy as we adapt to it. Fish oil has been shown to reduce this inflammation which helps speed up our recovery and adaption from exercise.
Protein: Protein is the building block of our muscles. During training, we break down these tissues through the stress of strenuous activity, so having a post-wod shake can help speed the process along.
Most protein shakes these days have a variety of other ingredients designed to reduce stress hormones, decrease inflammation, etc etc. It can be a minefield to know what to choose.
We have tried many a products in our time, and we stand behind Genetic Supplements Matrix Recover.
Best Supplements for Sex (what you were REALLY reading this blog to find out...)
Exercise: A good sex life and a strong sex drive has been linked on hundreds of occasions to fitness levels. Not only are our bodies 'fitter' and 'healthier' so everything is working as it should, but we feel more confident about ourselves and we appeal more to potential partners...thus increasing the likelihood of getting some!
Remove household toxins: There are various forms of harmful toxins that haunt our homes and can be putting a damper on testosterone production. From household cleaning detergents to pesky moulds.
Healthy fats: Our body is made up of a huge portion of (good) fats, every single cell in your body has a fatty phospholipid layer, this includes the sex cells. Healthy fats are also thought to boost production of sex hormones like testosterone.
These healthy fats include olive oil, coconut oil, avocado, nuts/seeds and fish oils.
All the above supplements are great and we use them all from time to time, but is there something else we can use? An 'all-in-one' perhaps? Funny you should ask...
The Best All-in-One Supplement to help you get leaner, stronger, fitter, recover faster and stay healthy and happy for the rest of your life.
Yes a long title for this supplement, but we feel one as such as this deserves a title of great length....
Our secret supplement is this: Optimal Nutrition.
I can almost hear your sighs of dismay now. If only there were a magical pill that would make everything right with the world. There's not. Sorry to disappoint you.
If you have an optimal diet, one that fits your needs and your lifestyle, you won't need to spend an extra penny on numerous supplements. You can get all the protein, healthy fats, vitamins and minerals from your daily chow. (Read our thoughts on nutrition here and also here).
"Failing to plan is planning to fail". If you do not address your nutrition, then you are doing yourself a disservice. If you want to back up all the hard work in the gym and get the results you want and, most importantly, live a long and happy life, you need to eat to reflect that.
It's that simple.
WORKOUT OF THE DAY
50 Over the tyre jumps
50 Deadlifts 60/40kg
50 Wall balls 9/6kg
50 Ring dips
50 Wall balls
50 Over the tyre jumps
(Time cap: 22 minutes)